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tv   BBC World News  BBC America  February 21, 2014 7:00am-8:01am EST

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hello and welcome to "gmt" on "bbc world news". i'm steven sacker. our top stories. ukraine's president announces political concessions in a bid to end the killing. but anti-government protesters on the street seem unimpressed with news of early elections. sporadic gunfire pearces uneasy calm in kiev's independence square while fists fly in the parliament. the opposition blames the government for days of bloodshed. the basque separatist group "e" ta is on the brink of giving up
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its guns. the rock and roll of winter sports. snowboarding isn't just for youth. we meet the more mature canadian snowboarder aiming for gold. jamie is here with a look at all the markets. >> they are discussing the turmoil in the markets. it is a pretty heated discussion. many of the emerging economies blame the u.s. for allowing interest rates to rise too much causing money to drain out of their economies. a very warm welcome to "gmt". midday here in london, 7:00 a.m. in washington, d.c., and 2:00 p.m. in kiev, where the sound of
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sporadic gunfire has punctuated a day of desperate political maneuvering by president yanukovy yanukovych. early elections now scheduled for the end of this year. effectively downgrading the power of the president. and the national unity government. but will it be enough to satisfy the thousands of protesters still in independence square. the initial reaction suggests maybe not. and eu officials in kiev remain cautious about the claims that a truce deal has been done. right now central kiev is relatively calm. from there we can get the very latest from our correspondent duncan crawford. >> reporter: reinforcements arriving at ukraine's revolutionary headquarters. in a public display of dissent against president yanukovych, dozen thes of police have the west of the country have defected and arrived in
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independence square, they said to back the fight against the government. the eu flag, a new addition to their uniforms, a reminder of how these protests began in the first place. >> translator: the situation in the ukraine is so bad we have decided to come to kiev to show our support for the protests. we all made a decision to come ourselves. >> reporter: overnight eu officials were locked in talks with the government to try to prevent more bloodshed. the government says a deal has been agreed to end the crisis. that includes early elections and a change to the constitution with powers transferred from the presidency to the parliament. protesters are cautious, though. and it's far from certain whether the men manning the barricades will accept the plan. >> these are petrol bombs. they are clearly ready for a fight. what matters to them is whether
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president yanukovych remains in power until he goes, these demonstrations look set to go on. and the anger and division in this country could continue to grow. they are just as stark in parliament. klitschko, the boxer turned opposition leader and presidential hopeful has been involved in plenty of fights and watched on as scuffles broke out between mps arguing over the crisis. the government still blames the protesters for the violence. the country and the world is focused on events in independence square and how the people across the country react will determine the fate of ukraine. duncan crawford, bbc news, kiev. >> it seems the events come thick and fast. let's go to kiev and to duncan crawford right now. duncan, let's unpick the politics first. president yanukovych came out
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with the announcement. he seems to think it represents a deal. tell me whether you think it is going to be enough. >> reporter: it's very difficult to know at the moment for the opposition leaders at least whether or not they will accept this deal in the last few moments the polish prime minister has just said that it might not get approval from the opposition. the foreign minister just tweeted saying you must remember in negotiations you don't always get 100% when it is a compromise. when you look at the protesters behind me in independence square, the crowds there, there are hundreds of protesters just learning about this proposed deal we should call it, which is being put forward by president yanukovych. it's unlikely that all the protesters down there are going to agree to what's being put
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forward. while early elections have been promised, they are still 10 months away potentially presidential elections. that is a very long time when you think about all the people who have died just yesterday in the lobby of this hotel, there were 13 dead bodies protesters were telling me they're not going to go anywhere until president yanukovych resigns. they said they would remain fighting the government until he left. >> i wonder if you are picking up any signs of real division between the opposition party leaders. the figure heads, people like klitschko and those on the streets in independence square. >> reporter: the opposition leaders are now coming under pressure themselves to compromise and try to lead the
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protesters behind me in independence square. for klitschko, the boxer turned politician, presidential hopeful himself. he will be under pressure to maybe accept this deal and try to lead the people behind me in independence square to compromise as well to potentially give up that square and go home. but the the issue for the opposition leaders, as it has been all along, is maintaining their legitimacy with the protesters behind me whilst trying to lead the country out of crisis. i think they're still facing that difficulty. because as i said before, a lot of protesters become more militant and more revolutionary. they are certainly more angry about the situation. if these concessions, constitutional reforms, powers transferred from the presidency to the parliament had been offered two months ago, maybe, just maybe then it would be enough and people would have gone home. because so many people died, it
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would be very difficult to make those people go home unless the president himself resigns. >> duncan, thank you for the very latest from kiev it goes without saying we will keep you updated on all developments from ukraine as they happen here on "bbc world news". in other news, militants in somalia attacked the presidential palace in mowi mogadishu. it is fought the somali president is unharmed. although some of the attackers have been killed. al shabaab said it was behind the assault. nicolas maduro threatened to expel cnn over its coverage there. he said he would take action if
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cnn didn't rectify the coverage. security staff on mt. everest to prevent fights breaking out amongst climbers. members of the nepal army will be 5,000 feet above sea level. the syrian government told the bbc it will participate in future peace talks. when they ended in failure almost a week ago, there was speculation that it was effect live i finished. not so says the syrian's foreign minister. >> reporter: it may look like a gathering of party faithful standing for the national anthem. but this is sports day, syrian style.
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instilling values in the next generation. to defend their country and president assad. there's even a dramatization of a soldier dying on the front line. this pageant at a damascus school is taking place just after the government's delegation returned from peace talks in geneva. the message there was the same as here. president assad's future isn't up for discussion. i went to see a leading member of the government's team at the talks. >> if they believe we have gone to geneva to give the keys of damascus to this small group of people, then they are wrong. we shall be ready to sit together with the syrian opposition and discuss the future of syria together. but the syrian people will give
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authority to their president and to their government and other institutions. in no way we shall allow such a thing to happen in syria so long as we have a breath in us. >> the fate of the people detailed in these files was another issue that came to nothing in geneva. prominent lawyer told me he never expected political prisoners would be freed. >> thousands of people disappear from two years. nobody knows about them. >> reporter: more people were arrested this week, including his league. is it possible to say how many are in prison? >> we suppose how much is this place and how much is that. we suppose about 200,000.
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>> reporter: nasri knows where she stands with the government. this well-known singer wants to put on her best face to report a patriotic video for the army. she calls it a message of love. she tells me she was raised to love the government and the army. she said all syrians should gather around this great establishment. that same message blairs from these vehicles that drive along damascus streets every day now. >> this is a message from a government that believes it's winning. never mind the peace talks ended in failure or the west is talking about arming the rebels. the government here believes is not going anywhere.
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do stay with us here on "bbc world news". still to come, more protests, more riot police. not all is at it seems. this is myanmar. security forces are policing their own reputation. e team bet. e team bet. he's the kind of player that puts the puck, horsehide, bullet. right where it needs to be. coach calls it logistics. he's a great passer. dependable. a winning team has to have one. somebody you can count on. somebody like my dad. this is my dad. somebody like my mom. my grandfather. i'm very pround of him. her. them. kand i don't have time foris morunreliable companies.b angie's list definitely saves me time and money. for over 18 years we've helped people take care of the things that matter most. join today. hi boys! i've made you campbell's chunky new england clam chowder.
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you're watching "gmt". after a cease-fire lasting two and a half years in northern spain, there is growing speculation that the basque separatists groups eta is ready to disarm. an announcement is expected in the next couple of hours. who is eta and what do we know about them? they wage aid bloody campaign for independence leading to the deaths of 800 people. basque separatists claimed the area as their own. between the late '70s and
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through the '80s they were able to kill 100 people per year on average. in 2001, the european union declared eta a terror organization. after one failed cease-fire in 2011, eta declared a permanent and internationally verifiable cease-fire. so those talks are expected this afternoon to announce that eta is now ready to disarm. we'll bring it to you when it happens. the police in myanmar have a bad reputation, or at least they did have in the past. but the country is changing fast. with political reforms under way, efforts are under way to bring the burmese police up to international standards. jonah fischer has been finding out. >> reporter: angry scenes yet again on the streets yangon. it's not bringing down the
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generals that gets people in disputes but the need for the constitution to be changed. but as you probably guessed, all is not as it seems. everyone you can see here is a policemen. and this is part of a course in crowd control being run by the european union. >> there is too much pressure on the line of the police. they are moving forward. so to remove the demonstrators, they have a little space in front of the line. >> so push forward in a relative live nonviolent way? >> a nonviolent way. that's for sure. >> nearly 4,000 policemen will be talking about crowd dynamics and crucially when and how to use force. the burmese police, like most of the big state institutions here, have been completely untouched by the reform process that's been taking place.
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officers like these are unprepared for the increase in public demonstrations and the occasional outbreak of mob violence of rapid political change. the burmese police have been seen at their very first. during violence in myanmar, riot police were seen looking on as buddhists burned muslim houses. >> there have been things we have done badly and that we have done wrong in the past. it can improve the way we operate. >> when we get protesters. >> many believe that reforms have now stalled. myanmar's democratic spring may be followed by winter, not
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summer. >> we have come here because there was momentum. so the eu came here when there was a transition. we decided to lift the the sanctions. we have decided to reinstall treatment. we have given political support. >> if reforms are halted, the commitment of the police to their new training will almost certainly be put to the test. we are going to bring you another sochi olympics story. we're going to talk about caroline, who as a young girl in canada, never dreamed she would snowboard, let alone compete in the olympics. because this canadian woman grew up skiing. she didn't actually start snowboarding at all until her early 20s, when most of her peers already had years of
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training. now at her second olympics at the veteran age of 35, she hopes to make it to the medal podium when she competes on sunday. how a summer job helped fuel her olympic dream. >> i remember being 13 and watching my best friend on the regional racing team and thinking she's so lucky. so nice to be part of a group and doing gates every day and training. but at 13 i remember thinking i'm way too old to start racing in skiing. and then i discovered snowboarding when i was about 16 for the first time. snowboarding was sort of just something that i could do on i hill and that was different. people said, oh, you're really good at this carving business, you know? and there was that. but there was also that little speck of a dream that i had had
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when i was 13. snowboarding allowed me to live it just because snowboarding isn't skiing. snowboarding is a young sport. so it doesn't have all the tradition that skiing has. at 13, i was too old to start competing in skiing. at 22 i wasn't too old in snowboarding. i tree planted for many years when i was 18, 19, until i was 23 i think. i tree planted mostly in northern ontario. basically you get paid per tree. you have to plant as many as you can in a day. if i did between 4,000 and 5,000 trees in a day, that was a good day. for me it was my first experience where i kind of discovered that i was competitive, that i could be competitive. that's what fueled me to plant those 5,000 trees a day or 4,000 trees a day. when is someone told me, hey, you should start race anything
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snowboarding, it wasn't so foreign for me to be competitive. it was a great experience. it was fantastic to be in my own country too. but it was pouring rain. you couldn't see anything. it was just a miserable day for racing. we couldn't train prior to our event. so i think i made it my main focus to be ready to deal with the unexpected in sochi. now, if the financial world is focused on sydney for the g20 summit, perhaps that is actually appropriate. one man who will be keeping a close eye is tim harcourt. he is an economist who streufts and analyzes economies all over the world. he said it is no longer relevant. >> i'm the airport economist at
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sydney airport about to embark on my latest travels. in the past five years, i've been to 58 different countries. kyrgyzstan, mongolia, you name it. we talked about distance, how far australia was. we were down under away from the rest of the world. i think it's now down under to down wonder. and the power of proximity has changed from the tourney of distance. we're in the same time zone. we have strong economic links. when i go to a country i try to go to key decision makers, the government, central bank, trade unions, business groups. i just get a feel for an attack on their own country and then i try to talk to the australian businesses, the american and british economists to find out
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what foreign investors are thinking of. >> good day. how are you. here's my passport. as we host the g20 in australia, it's quite a pivotal time. we just signed a tree frayed agreement with tore ria. we're moving from the mining boom to the dining boom due to the great demand for agricultural produce. we have a clean green supply of food. we used to be known as china's quarry and japan's beach. if you look at our architecture building up all over a asia and a lot of professional services we provide in the region, it's a different australia and in many ways the global financial crisis allowed us to go from down under to down wonder. i think this is the tip of the iceberg. we will see more investment into
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asia, particularly as the demographics change. we are going to see a lot of health care financial services playing more of a stronger role i think in asia. and i think the great urbanization particularly of china means more architects, more environmental engineers, more education providers are going to be more in the second and third cities of china. elsewhere in indonesia and asia. i think it is very exciting for the great gamut of the industry. >> all right. insights there of the aussie economist. now here's some news. it isn't news at all if you're a doing lover. scientists say they are shown the connection between man and his best friend is more than just company. they may be able to tune into human emotions.
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welcome to "gmt" on "bbc world news". our top stories. ukraine's president announces political concessions in a bid to end the killing. but anti-government protesters on the streets seem unimpressed with news of early elections. . sporadic gunfire at independence square while fists fly in the parliament as the opposition blames the government for days of bloodshed. the dalai lama is making a
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call on the president obama and the white house. they say it will seriously impair u.s. china tpwha relatre it's all about big business but big technology and big fashion where it all collides with you. it's called life logging. it's smart glasses, wearable devices will help us run our lives better, make billions for businesses and raise huge questions over who has control over all that data. a very warm welcome back to "gmt" where the sound of sporadic gunfire punctuated desperate political ma phaoufring. he announced a series of concessions. early elections now scheduled
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for the end of this year, stpaourbl change effectively downgrading the power of the president and national unity government. will it be enough to satisfy the thousands of protesters that you can see right now still occupying independence square in kiev. initial reaction suggests not. the very latest from the polish prime minister, in his words, the two sides are still far apart. there is, you can you can see, relative calm in kiev right now. many protesters have been speaking to the media suggesting what they heard does not in any way does not accept the minute numb they can accept to leave
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the barricades behind. the impasse is still very much there. the diplomacy is not just about negotiations between president yanukovych and the opposition leadership in ukraine. it involves a very significant international. we can cross live to brussels. you of course have been follow this very closely. what is the current position of the russian government. do you believe president yanukovych's concessions, his offer represent a way out of this crisis? >> well, time will show. what we witnessed the last days
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and weeks is something that resembles very much an attempt at a coup d'etat in an effort to overthrow the government by force. what they have offered is a set of major concessions which would have shown in my view a way out of the crisis, a political way. but i'm not entirely convinced that will satisfy the extremists who seem to have the upper hand on what's happening in kiev and some other stays of ukraine. >> how can you call it a cue day take when we see more than 70 people have been killed and that the vast majority appear to have
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been gunned down by ukrainian security forces and the thousands we see are demanding genuine democracy and freedom. what kind of a coup d'etat is that? >> did you count the number of policemen that were gunned down by extremists? >> yes. as you say the number of people killed by humanitarian groups, the vast majority are unarmed civilians. >> nobody has said they were unarmed. they were killed with shots in the back. >> is it your contention that outside forces, this is a phrase used by outside forces are in a sense behind the protests in
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other cities and the european nations. >> well, unfortunately we have reached a situation that will go out of control of anybody. but if we look back i think the one-sided position of the governments that you referred to, they are open support for the opposition. later role in exacerbating this crisis. >> russia has played the most significant role of this cap net from the very beginning. you pressured not to sign an association deal with the european union. to this very deal we understand that the russian government is telling yanukovych if he makes
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too many concessions you will cut the the resources that are keeping his government afloat? is that true? >> no, it's not true. completely not true. russia has not been playing any part in what's happening until at the request of president yanukovych when they were sent to take part in the negotiations together with the three eu foreign ministers. it was not russia not to sign the association agreement. the eu had been pressuring to sign it against the country and of its people. >> if president yanukovych does not hold on to power, is there a possibility that russia could consider military intervention in ukraine.
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>> absolutely not. >> are you absolutely sure about that? there have been some reports that russian forces have been prepared for a role inside ukraine. >> that's completely untrue. there is no evidence to support that. and please do not disseminate wrong messages. >> there are fears that what is happening in ukraine today obviously on russia's border and the european union as well represents what some are calling the gravest crisis facing both your country and europe in decades. how serious do you see this situation to be right now? >> well, on this i may agree. it is indeed a very serious crisis. it is split. it is not only split on
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political terms but what is increasing dangerous in geographic al terms. because in many parts of the country, the majority of the population living in the east and the south are very concerned about what's happening in kiev and the west of the country. so it is not a conflict between the government and the ukrainian people. it's a split of the ukrainian society. that is a dangerous. neither the european union nor anybody else would wish to see ukraine disintegrate. >> a final word. there are some in ukraine, i'm thinking some of the eastern parts of ukraine who are actively talking about seeking protection from russia, maybe even seeding from ukraine if this develops into a civil war.
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what is surb that's stance on that? >> well, from the information i possess at this point the people there are extremely worried and are trying or have been trying to assist the central government of ukraine to take measures to bring stability and calm into the country. >> all right. we have to leave it there. am bass bar, thank you very much for joining us on "gmt" from brussels. >> thank you. >> the the violence in ukraine began when its president suddenly pulled back establishing closer ties with the eu as we have just been discussing with the ambassador. it too gained independence from the soviet union in the early 1990s. and it is also looking towards europe.
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rahan, it is fascinating to compare and contrast the situation in ukraine with what you find in georgia right now. how will the georgians looking at what's happening in ukraine. are they very worried about it? >> been an hour ago the georgian president delivered his annual speech at the parliament. he began his speech by talking about ukraine. lots of deputies at the parliament were holding ukrainian flags. we have seen the sense of solidarity throughout the crisis in ukraine. # there were strong rallies. people just showing support. they are watching the events in the ukraine very closely. georgia and mull dough va are the remaining ex soviet
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countries still seeking closer ties with europe. armenia and other countries in the south which was about to sign the initial agreement with the eu last november was lured back by russia and decided to join the customs union instead. georgians are slightly worried that somehow russia might put pressure on the country. >> thank you very much for joining us on "gmt" from tiblesi. jamie is here with all the business news. we're going to start i think with more thoughts about ukraine. >> yes. much of the roots do lie between ukraine, russia and europe. it means another downgrade for
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the credit rating. it is likely to defetal if the political situation doesn't improve. and financial support to russia. this is to the tune of $15 million. now, let's move a long way away down under to sydney. already the finger pointing has begun. central bankers from developing nations are all gathering in the next three days. turmoil in emerging markets sparked. in recent years developing countries have been gorging on cheap borrowing. according to one estimate, borrowers actually raised almost a trillion dollars on bond markets. that's between just between
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2010, 2013. since the fed began to shift its policy, foreign buyers have been pull their money out of emerging markets bringing it back to the u.s. indonesian shares down 18.5% in the last year, taking account for the local currency. by the same measure, brazil's measure down 13%. turny, down 34%. the fed has paid too little attention on them. you the imf are pushing back. so i'm joined by the chief international economist at ing financial markets. rob, who do you think is right? >> well, i'm afraid i have to
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take sides with the imf and the united states. reality is the taper that people are talking about, pulling back of money princing from places like the united states, well, they are still doing it, just at a slightly sphroer pace. the first announcements came in may of last year. they have had an awfully long time to get their houses in order. >> i'm thinking of countries like chile. >> yeah. that's why it seems doubtful this is a generic feature driven by what the federal reserve and the u.s. has been doing. they don't have inflation. they don't consume outside their means to produce. well, they're not being treated
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nearly so badly by financial markets. >> sales of smart watchers, smart glasses and other wearable glasses will increase five-fold the next couple of years. where wii go, what we do, what kind of calories we burn off. it is called life logging. >> he has been capturing his life for eight years with this small camera that takes photographs every few seconds. the i.t. researcher says this is the next evolution of the internet. >> we're working on developing a search engine for the south. just like google index. we are looking at indexing a
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search engine for them. where did i park in the airport? all this information about yourself captured inside a search engine for yourself in a private manner. other devices are popping up. >> this is my attempt to track my life. i wear one of these, a wrist band. and it tracks my activity levels. and i have one of these, an internet connected weighing scales. it go on to my smart device. >> it is a great moat vacation al tools. the potential is vast. >> in the past we would have to
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write diaries or keep logs, which was a lot of record for people. >> it also raises troubling questions about our privacy. but tracking our every move is the new data gold rush. in case you can't get to your market on your watch, i've got a huge screen which will show you exactly where everything is. ftse is up. it's been pushed up by vodophone. some people might be sniffing around with a bid for vodophone. it's all speculation at the moment. one reason why the shares are up
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2% down a touch against the dollar. that's it. that's business. >> thank you very much, jamie. >> in a bid to end the crisis in ukraine, president yanukovych promises to set up a national unity government as well. two years after a cease-fire, the militant basque movement eta is expected to announce it is ready to disarm. later today, the dalai lama is to pay a visit to the room inside the white house for a meeting with president obama. it is a an encounter heavily weighted. it will seriously impair u.s.
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china relations. martin, do you take seriously the chinese anger, and how far do you think they will push it? >> that's right, steven. they are angry words. we heard similar words in 2011. that was the last time the president met the dalai lama. most would say they didn't have serious relations. what's clear is beijing wants make a point, wants to make it loudly. washington is making a point by holding this with the dalai lama. that meeting isn't being held in the oval office. certainly america doesn't want to give that impression. journalists will have no access to the meeting. some might see that as a small
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concession to the chinese. >> we have been hearing about the pivot to asia. try to sum up for me how you think u.s./china relations stand right now. >> well, certainly at the moment there is issues of contention between the two countries. what we are seeing between america and china is the need for north korea and iran. there is one big issue in the region and that is the pivot to asia. certainly china doesn't like that. what we are seeing is one super bar strike to stake its claim in asia and a rising super power interest between these two
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countries are rubbing up against each other which i think most analysts would say is leading to greater friction. >> martin, thank you very much from joining us from beijing. now, let me tell you a little bit about claire merchant williams. she loves fashions. she's a british size 26. that is well into what they call the plus size range. for years high street shops cat erred to the more standard shape. her blog monkey see, monkey do, monkey wear is one of hundreds of plus size fashion blogs. women say they are beginning to see a change in the fashion industry's study. >> i have been interested in fashion since the release of sex
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and the city and watching how much money the four women in that show had with fashion. a friend of mine always complimented me on what i wore. she said a you always look really good. you don't have the selection being fat. how do you manage to look so good. i took it as a compliment. it didn't really sound like a compliment. i wonder if there are plus sized bloggers out there. so i started having a look. and i sent myself a challenge. ten days, ten dresses, take a picture of me every day. and it started from there really. the biggest thing of someone my size found is not many stores indicator to me.
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>> when i first started there was maybe 20 of us. there must be hundreds of plus size bloggers now. and we realized there's a real market to reach out to. that's really what we tapped into. >> bloggers have made a huge difference to us as a business. it gives women over a certain size a voice. and i think companies have to listen to their voice. they want fashion. they're not women hiding away. they have interests as anieer women is. >> the industry has changed a lot. i'm finding more clothes now than five years ago. definitely. >> the big benefit is that you actually get to go see the items. sometimes you can try them on,
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which is brilliant. we're a cheap alternative. we're not plus size models. they have a body that's very different than a body of size 24 or 26. when you see someone size 26 wearing an outfit you get a better idea of how you're going to fit into that. i've always been the biggest of all of my friends. and that's been a really positive thing about me being into plus size blogging. i have met people the same size as me. it is a really nice feeling. well, there's claire merchant williams. that's pretty much it from all of us on "gmt". of course the big story today is ukraine. we're following every twist and turn. i'm delighted to say karen is joining me to tell us what is coming up on "impact".
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>> we will get the very latest on what's going on in ukraine. you just interviewed the russian ambassador to the eu. we will be finding out why a cartoon of chinese president has gone viral. and how do you save a dying language? we'll be talking that in english. he's the kind of player that puts the puck, horsehide, bullet. right where it needs to be. coach calls it logistics. he's a great passer. dependable. a winning team has to have one. somebody you can count on. somebody like my dad. this is my dad. somebody like my mom. my grandfather. i'm very pround of him. her. them.
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